Downtown Raleigh Still Booming, According to Downtown Raleigh Alliance | News

Downtown Raleigh Still Booming, According to Downtown Raleigh Alliance


The Downtown Raleigh Alliance's annual State of Downtown Raleigh report is hot off the presses and continues to highlight historic growth for the center of the City of Oaks.

Since 2005, per the report, more than $3 billion in development has been constructed or completed in downtown Raleigh, providing residents with new places to eat, live, work, and play. That growth continued in 2017 and will likely sustain itself in the years to come. Between 2008 and 2016, property values downtown increased 31 percent.

Here are some key takeaways:

1) More humans.
  • Downtown Raleigh’s population has grown 179 percent since 2000 with the addition of over thirty-five hundred residential units.
  • Eighty-five hundred people currently live downtown, and 16,900 within one mile of downtown.
  • Those numbers are only going to increase: downtown Raleigh already doubled its number of housing units since 2000 and is slated to triple that number by 2020.

2) People here like to eat:
  • Since 2016, fifty-one restaurants opened downtown, with twenty-four alone in 2017.
  • The report made note of the amazing Brewery Bhavana, which was named by Forbes as one of the ten coolest places to eat in the world and was rated one of the ten best new restaurants in the U.S. by Bon Appetit.
  • In 2017, food and beverage sales hit $223 million, with 10 percent growth over 2016 and 95 percent growth since 2009.
3) They like to shop, too:
  • Since 2014, downtown Raleigh has added forty new stores. Ninety-four percent of the stores downtown are locally owned.
  • Forty-six percent growth in its retail base since 2010, the largest growth in any storefront use for downtown.

Things to consider:
  • The DRA reports, in recent years, have maintained a similar formula: glowing reports of new additions paired with hopeful projections about the future of downtown. The numbers here back that up. It's undeniable that Raleigh is growing, and growing fast.
  • But that doesn't mean it's going to be cheap. The average asking price for a multifamily unit downtown is $1,444. Even working full-time at $15 an hour, you won’t be able to afford that. Last year, average rent downtown grew 9 percent, and there is a significant demand for affordable housing options in and around downtown Raleigh. A lot of the new housing units built downtown are not likely to be affordable.
  • Still, Raleigh appears to be doing better in the affordable housing arena than other similarly sized downtown areas in Southern cities, including Charlotte, Nashville, Atlanta, Dallas, and Austin. The reality is that downtown living anywhere is expensive.
Want more? You can read the full report below:
See related PDF SOD18FINALwithcover_lores.pdf

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